Idling: Will Municipality Clean Up Its Act? READER


Long-time Bulldog reader and commenter Andrew Zenner takes on the issue of vehicle idling:

Before decreasing the time to one minute, the City of Ottawa should be proving this is nothing more than virtue-signaling.

How many tickets have actually been given out over the years the three-minute bylaw has been in effect?

How do you give a ticket for three minutes of idling when it takes about two hours for bylaw to appear. How will this be easier when the time frame is only one minute?

And perhaps more telling over the years, the worst idling offenders in my experienced are vehicles marked “City of Ottawa” on the site. What has the city done to reduce idling by its own vehicles and can it provide any proof that the current bylaw is operable and effective and that City of Ottawa idling is down?

Or is this just a costly exercise in virtue-signaling?


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4 Responses

  1. Doug says:

    Re idling city vehicles – back when Kent Kirkpatrick was the City’s General Manager, a city vehicle sat in front of my house idling over the noon hour during a mild weather day. When I brought the matter to Mr. Kirkpatrick’s attention, I was told that the vehicle had to idle so that the occupant’s computer would operate. I guess the city’s purchasing agent forgot to order computers with batteries. Virtue signaling? Indeed!

  2. sisco.farraro says:

    Virtue signalling, what a great term. I plan on using it in the future if you don’t hold the copyright, Andrew. Like Doug, I have seen many occurrences of the city breaking its own rules. Most recently I was turning off Conroy Road onto St. Laurent Blvd. About 100 feet onto St Laurent and 100 feet from the next bus stop, a city bus was idling. I presume it was running a bit ahead of schedule and had time (as well as a few people and some of the ozone layer) to kill.

  3. Andrew Zenner says:

    Sisco – You are welcome to use the term. It has been in the public lexicon for quite a while. Unfortunately, it was not coined by me so I can lay no claim to royalties.

  4. John Langstone says:

    I’m a little late remembering this, but when we think of this proposed by-law, recall that the new Civic Hospital is not being built to meet Ottawa’s High Performance energy efficiency building standards. It passed site plan control before the standards were enacted, although they were in the works as I recall.

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